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Police seize computers from Panther Creek High student after school hacking

Posted November 13, 2015

Panther Creek High School

— Police last week searched the home of a Panther Creek High School student for possible evidence related to unauthorized access to the school's computer system last month, according to a search warrant released Friday.

The 17-year-old student, who lives in Morrisville, was seen on security video sneaking into the school office after school on Oct. 22 and was later confronted by a teacher in a locked classroom with what appeared to be a laptop computer, according to the search warrant.

Two weeks earlier, the PowerSchool system, a state database that tracks student attendance and grades, at Panther Creek High was hacked into on three separate occasions, and the grades and class ranks of six students were changed, the warrant states. A total of 90 grades were changed in the system, and half of them belonged to the student from Morrisville, who saw his class rank improve from 67th to seventh, the warrant states.

Police traced the hack to a computer at the Wake County's West Regional Library, on Louis Stephens Road, where the student often volunteers, according to the warrant.

Wake County school officials discovered that an email sent from one Panther Creek High teacher to another a few days before the initial hacking contained keystroke-tracking malware, the warrant states.

Principal Camille Holmes Hedrick has said the school would contact and send corrected transcripts to any university or college where students had sent information that might have been affected by the hacking.

No charges have been filed in the case.


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  • Jordan Rash Nov 13, 2015
    user avatar

    Alright, this is news to me that someone would be so stupid as to change grade. But it is no shocker that someone was able to change grades in WCPSS. Their security is a joke, from one simple google search you can gain access to almost anything you want within WCPSS. If WCPSS wants to be smart, they remove the pre-installed keylogger installed on every school computer.

  • Kevin O'Donnell Nov 13, 2015
    user avatar

    The kid is book smart but...............

    I hope this incident does not define him/her in years ahead. We have all made youthful mistakes that we later regret.